Cold, hard cash - in your hands right now.
Yes, fifty million dollars lay naked, in a few briefcases, right in front of you.
How would your life change? You have 30 seconds to answer that...
No, I'm not asking you if your life would be better or worse. What I'm really saying is, have you figured out what you'll do when money is no longer an issue?
The clock starts now...(take some time to think about that)
If you couldn't come up with a definitive answer within 30 seconds, then read on, because you've just demonstrated the first reason why financial freedom is not for you.
Treating Financial Freedom As A Panacea
Expecting financial freedom to be the cure to all of life's problems is a dangerous perception.
There is little doubt that we'll have to sacrifice a good amount of time, effort, desires and opportunities on our way to financial freedom.
While I'm trying my best to take the express route by packing a stronger punch each month so that I can 'retire' by 35, it still means I'm delaying 'conventional fun' by 10 good years.
10 years is not something you'd want to gamble with.
What more those who plan to retire at 65?
40 years of delaying gratification, thinking that all of life's problems will be solved once you reach 'financial freedom' is naive, at most.
There's a saying that goes like this:
"If you're not happy now, you won't be happy because of money."
I've seen my fair share of wealthy and miserable folks. I've also seen my fair share of wealthy and happy folks.
Financial Freedom Is A Means To An End - It Is Not The End
That pile of cash is still staring at you. $50 million dollars.
What are you going to do with it? You're financially free now.
If you think that financial freedom is the destination, then you've arrived. Congratulations! Now you can officially be a beach bum and sip Martinis on a hammock.
If you're trying to strive for financial freedom, you're an ambitious person.
And because you're given the curse of ambition, it won't be long before you get bored with a beach bum lifestyle.
What I'm trying to say is that financial freedom is an enabler. It enables you to do things, to achieve achievements that weren't possible before it.
My main motivation to strive for it is that I want control of my life. I want to pursue a vocation in arts, photography, music - at my own time, in my own control and not having to worry about the financial side of things.
Hey, maybe even starting a nice little food truck like Jon Favreau in the movie 'Chef'.
Financial freedom enables me to do just that.
Not Having A Definite Point
Forget about financial freedom if you do not have a definite point.
Financial freedom is different for everyone. However, it's still important to have your definition of it. Is it $2 million dollars? $5 million? 6 rental properties?
Or something less ambitious like mine - when passive income exceeds monthly expenses by 50% or more...
Whatever it is for you, it has to be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-related. In other words, it has to be S.M.A.R.T.
But they all share one common theme - not worrying about money without an active job.
If you do not have a definition of financial freedom, then you'll be chasing the horizon.
And we all know how that ends...
Not Thinking About It Constantly
I have this belief that if you want to excel in something, you have to be a little obsessed over it.
No, not that kind.
I mean you have to be constantly thinking about it, visualising it, writing about it and living it.
This little blog right here keeps me in alignment with what I'm trying to achieve. I track, I measure, I ponder and I share my thoughts.
If it all works out, I'll achieve that elusive freedom.
If it fails, at least everything I've tried will be documented here.
And there's certainly value in that as well - something others can learn from.
You're Already Financially Free
Needless to say, the last and only valid reason why financial freedom is not for you is because you are already free.
In fact, financial freedom should be taught in school as if it is the goal of education.
In retrospect, school would have been much more meaningful if I had lived my life backwards - by first understanding this whole rat race conundrum and financial freedom first.
Then reverse engineer the whole thing.
Perhaps then, we would all be doing something we really want to do.